Monday, October 15, 2012

I'm scrubbing in!

Last week my 92-year old Grandfather has a small procedure done. 

The doctor, who thought it prudent to not let the 92-year old that the mass on his kidney was cancerous, told my Grandfather that he was having a polyp removed. 

This seemed to satisfy my Grandfather and so into surgery he went, and out he came...with a catheter.

Now, speaking from experience, a catheter isn't the most pleasant thing on the planet (nor in a bar, or at a restaurant), but it doesn't hurt. It can be slightly uncomfortable at times, but mostly it's just cumbersome. (And uncool.)

But when you're an old man who pretty much sits in front of the TV all day, it shouldn't really impede on your lifestyle.

Unless, of course, you're my Grandfather.

My mother, who was in charge of taking care of her father (my grandfather), was told by the doctor that the catheter could come out Friday or Saturday. But when she called, she was told the doctor was "unreachable". For days. (Also uncool.)

On Sunday, I went over to visit my Grandfather to see how he was doing. I brought him a pumpkin pie because, really, who doesn't love pumpkin pie? He's in the back room so I yell out, "How are you doing today?"

To which he responds, "LOUSY!"

Oh boy.

Turns out, his catheter started leaking. It wasn't draining in the bag, it was draining onto the couch where he was sitting. Or on the floor when he stood up. Apparently they had already called my mother, who was on her way.

And here's how the rest of the afternoon went:

KK calls the doctor's office to talk to the Emergency Answering Service and is told the doctor on call would be paged and would call us back.

This conversation took place:
MOM: "This is a mess. What are we going to do?"
KK: "We'll fix it. We may have to bring him to the ER to have them fix it."
MOM: "Great. Now we'll be spending the whole day in ER."
GRANDFATHER: (shouting from the other room, oblivious to our conversation) "Should we can an ambulance?"
MOM and KK (in unison): "NO!"

KK calls the doctor's office AGAIN because it has been 30 minutes and no call from the Doctor.

Doctor calls back finally. My mother must not like what he's saying to her because she makes a face and tells him to hold on.

MOM: "He said we should try to take the catheter out ourselves. I don't think I can do this, KK. YOU'RE going to have to do it."

KK: "No way. You can totally do it. It's not hard at all, I did mine when I had one. It's easy, the doctor will walk you through it."

(NOTE: It's not that I couldn't do it, but I didn't think the place for me was all up in my grandfather's kibbles and bits, you know? Plus, my mom had been caring for him for days and had already gone through that embarrassment. Why put both of us through it?)

And so, with me on the phone with the Doctor calling out directions, my Grandmother fetching a pair of scissors, and my mother kneeling down in front of my Grandfather's private parts asking "Is it this tube?? Is it this tube??", we removed my 92-year old grandfather's catheter.

"It's out!" I told the doctor. "I feel like I should hand out cigars."


FunnyGal KAT said...

Your poor grandfather! He's lucky to have such caring family. Kudos to you for helping (and keeping your sense of humor!)

taotao said...
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DNice said...

Catheters are much more painful for men than women!
Sorry to see this - is he ok?

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